#3. They Understood Different Cultures
What a cute way to describe a hate crime, National Police Gazette! In 1882, a journalist's idea of cultural sensitivity was spelling the word "Chinaman" with vowels instead of little devil faces.
"A thousand bucks for a China Gal? You got yourself a deal, heathen mother of a beautiful Oriental child! I have a few questions, though. My animals are all well trained -- is there a perfume I can rub on her to convince my falcons she's not Chinese? Oh, and what happens if she lays eggs inside a church? Ha ha listen to me ... fretting like a woman! Just hand me its leash and I'll figure it out."
The lack of African Americans in ice hockey may be an issue best left to stand-up comedians. As it was explained to me, it has something to do with either ice being too cold for a brother or how when police see a black man strapping blades to his feet, they open fire long before he can land a toe-loop jump. Science, on the other hand, has no explanation. The best the writer of this 1970 article could come up with is this: All hockey players are Canadian, so Canadians must be racist. This struck me as strange. Not because it was inaccurate -- Canadians really are the worst. It's strange because it showed that the writer, Dick Bacon, knew that there was a concept called "racism" and that it was bad, yet he still sat down and wrote an article called "Why NEGROES Can't Break into HOCKEY."
Every time the National Police Gazette printed an issue, they lost two to five staff members to Satan reaching through their office floor and pulling their tainted souls into hell. If this racist magazine still existed, this is what they would be producing today:
#2. Their Readers Were Always About to Die
The National Police Gazette is a great example of how our society has evolved. It's almost like a coursebook for how civilized people should not behave. And yet there is one thing the National Police Gazette invented that we still use today: alarmist sensationalism. Every single one of its hundreds of issues told readers how their water, horse, food or appliance was going to kill them. To make matters worse, the government knew the whole time and just didn't care. Think about that. These childish scare tactics were developed by the same primitive 19th century journalists who thought strapping an innocent Chinese man to a bull was light comedy, and every single media outlet still uses them today. If a time-traveler from 1940 landed here, he'd say, "Wait, your society is so civilized that you stopped lighting matches on your wives, but you still try to scare the shit out of each other for attention? How do you make babies here in the future when everyone is too stupid to find their dick and too fancy to put it in a woman?"
H-Hitler!? How to avoi -- ack! These headlines! L-listed in ... the wrong! Order! Hrk!
Sometimes it was faster for the National Police Gazette to just show you how you were going to die.
The advertisements didn't exactly help enhance the National Police Gazette reader's sense of security. There were public service announcements in the magazine to WASH to stop skin disease. Mail-order gonorrhea cures ran on most pages for almost six decades, presumably for a consumer market that didn't mind dripping and screaming by their mailbox for six to eight weeks. Every fourth classified ad was for something called BLOOD POISON, and I don't know even know if it was a cure or a weapon. My point is -- our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents were totally filthy and disgusting.
#1. It Was the First Magazine to Pick Fights with the Reader
The National Police Gazette was filled with boxing articles, and for a long time it was considered the leading authority on fighter rankings. I have no idea how this happened, since the boxers were ranked on the same page as fighting dogs and pro wrestlers, and their ranking system never got more complicated than "This man from Louisville sent in a topless picture of himself and said he could kick anybody's ass." For decades, the first section of every NPG issue was just pictures of people challenging the reader to a fight. Obviously this was awesome, and I wish magazines still did it ...
Carl Pons was featured several times in the I WILL KICK YOUR FUCKING ASS section. As you can see, he eventually got married to a person named "HIS WIFE" and began including her in his photo. I'm not sure why. Either she was the prize for beating him or she was there as a reminder that the last person to challenge Carl Pons wasn't simply defeated -- he was squeezed down into a womanlike shape and married.
Dear the National Police Gazette,
I've enjoyed your magazine for so many years that I've undressed my boys and taken pictures of them. Could you ask your readers to come by Trenton, Ohio, and fight them? Thanks!
-- C.B. Ward
P.S. Your feature on bag materials that won't suffocate a wife saved my fourth marriage!
You might also enjoy The 4 Most Homophobic Comics Ever Created or 5 Insane Fighting Manuals (You Shouldn't Listen To).